P89 – The undemocratic House of Lords should be replaced with a Senate Watch

This discussion is closed.
Saracen's Fez
Badges: 20
Rep:
?
#1
Report Thread starter 1 month ago
#1

What is this thread about?
This is a petition in the Model House of Commons (MHoC). It's a proposal submitted by an ordinary TSR user, that is first debated and then voted on. All are welcome and encouraged to ask questions about the petition's content and join in the debate – you don't have to be in a party or be an MP to do so. Anyyone who isn't an MP can submit a petition – and you can do that very easily by using the petition tool.

What is the MHoC?
It's a political role-playing game where we pretend to be the House of Commons, and it's been going since 2005. We have formed parties, we have elections twice a year, and we debate bills and motions just like the real-life parliament. If you want to know more about how the MHoC works, your first port of call is the user manual. If you'd like to get involved and possibly join a party, you want the welcome thread.


P89 – The undemocratic House of Lords should be replaced with a Senate, ThePootisPower
The undemocratic House of Lords should be replaced with a Senate

As it stands, the House of Lords and the general public have almost no connection. The majority of the Lords are either assigned their role via familial heredity (hereditary peers), holding ecclesiastical office (Lords Spiritual) , or being a Lord Temporal - the vast majority of which are chosen through methods inaccessible to and obscured from the general population, including being assigned a life peerage - many of which are selected by the Prime Minister, with opposition parties only able to recommend peers to be deliberated over by the Prime Minister.

While some life peerages are handled by the House of Lords Appointments Commission, it should also be stated that if the prime minister really wanted to, they could amend the recommendations made by said Commission. While convention has not seen this occur, I think the possibility that it could occur to be disturbing considering that the House of Lords has the potential to delay the passing of bills and can force Commons to reconsider decisions.

While the task of delaying the passing of bills, scrutinise bills and ensure that Commons does not break the law or pass bills that have not faced full scrutiny is one that must be performed in order to maintain good governance, the House of Lords is a backwards, inadequate system that is not accountable to the general public or the electoral system.

For the sake of fairness, transparency and democracy, the House of Lords should be replaced with a directly elected Senate. This senate, in theory, should be elected on a regional basis, with each region of England as well as Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland each electing 6 senators. Elections would be conducted via Single Transferable Vote in order to maintain a high level of proportional representation and prevent an unrepresentative Senate that allows all candidates to run without fear of creating a Spoiler Effect.

While parties would be allowed to have preferred candidates per region, there would be no need for candidates to be assigned via party and independent candidates would be accepted - hopefully, the reduction of party ties will ensure the fairly non-partisan intentions behind the House of Lord's inception will be carried through into the modern, more democratic Senate.
Last edited by Saracen's Fez; 4 weeks ago
0
04MR17
  • Careers Forum Helper
Badges: 22
Rep:
?
#2
Report 4 weeks ago
#2
"each region of England" is a bit vague. At the very least that's North, South Midlands. All returning 6 senators is 18, half the senate being English, minimum.

It's also worth saying that hereditory peers are very few in number at the moment.

I think one good thing about the house of lords is its size. More viewpoints, more attention to detail and more careful consideration for the state legislature. Including those who have spent years researching and campaigning on particular issues - experts you might say. My worry is a senate would vastly reduce the ability for this section of parliament to consider with care all the legislation being passed through it, it's a huge task for just a small number of people.

I'm certainly in favour of raising Lords reform, but not quite on this manner.
Posted on the TSR App. Download from Apple or Google Play
0
Connor27
Badges: 19
Rep:
?
#3
Report 4 weeks ago
#3
I’ll all for Lords reform although I’d prefer a transition to unicameralism with strengthened select committees as a check and balance rather than another elected chamber which has the potential to create conflicting mandates.

Nonetheless, since it’s only a petition, I shall vote aye.
0
Saunders16
  • Political Ambassador
Badges: 14
Rep:
?
#4
Report 4 weeks ago
#4
Very well-worded and always good to see new members getting involved.

However, as I said in my other reply, the Lords functions fine through the Salisbury Convention and Parliament Acts. The only thing that needs to be done is to make it more technocratic over time.
0
CatusStarbright
  • Political Ambassador
Badges: 22
Rep:
?
#5
Report 4 weeks ago
#5
Great to see a new name on a piece!

As for substance, while I do agree that the House of Lords requires reform, I am somewhat uncomfortable with having a directly elected Senate which, as Connor said, has the potential to create conflicting mandates.
0
Jammy Duel
  • Political Ambassador
Badges: 21
Rep:
?
#6
Report 4 weeks ago
#6
The Lords has a very specific role and anybody that actually watches the Lords, listens to the Lords, or reads the house of Lords hansard would recognise this. They play the very important role of being the scrutinising chamber, taking drivel produced in the commons and using their expertise, whether it be military, medical, or business expertise to improve the bill, whether that be fixing typographical errors, spotting unintended consequences due to their expertise, or using their real world experience to make it more applicable to said real world.

The creation of an elected upper chamber would result in the loss of this, no longer would you have a house of experts, rather you'd have a second chamber of partisan bumbling baboons we call politicians, they will no longer use real world experience to improve bills, rather their own personal beliefs to try to change it in a way they want it changing before blindly voting for or against on partisan lines. The civility of the chamber would also be lost.

I'm not saying the Lords is perfect, there are too many former politicians elevated to the Lords for a start and they're bloating the numbers, but solving these problems by creating a second elected chamber is like scrapping your car because it has a scratch on the bonnet
Posted on the TSR App. Download from Apple or Google Play
5
Jammy Duel
  • Political Ambassador
Badges: 21
Rep:
?
#7
Report 4 weeks ago
#7
And if we're going for claiming democratic mandate we shouldn't be having 6 per region because that really varies representation because London and the South East would be nearly 1.5m people per seat while Northern Ireland would be right down on 300k
0
ns_2
  • Political Ambassador
Badges: 17
Rep:
?
#8
Report 4 weeks ago
#8
The entire point of the Lords is to have an unelected scrutinising body; a body that isn't meant to be out their for their own good, and to push their own personal agendas - by being unelected, it is thought (though I acknowledge this isn't always the case) that the Lords are genuinely scrutinising the legislation before them and not simply voting to keep themselves in a job.

Nay.
0
barnetlad
Badges: 19
Rep:
?
#9
Report 4 weeks ago
#9
I'd still call it the Lords but agree with the basic premise and method of election.
0
Jammy Duel
  • Political Ambassador
Badges: 21
Rep:
?
#10
Report 4 weeks ago
#10
(Original post by barnetlad)
I'd still call it the Lords but agree with the basic premise and method of election.
What benefit is there to replacing the house of experts that give bills scrutiny that is sorely lacking in the commons and replacing it with another chamber of oblivious politicans?
Posted on the TSR App. Download from Apple or Google Play
0
Aph
Badges: 22
Rep:
?
#11
Report 4 weeks ago
#11
Nay, technocracy is important!
0
EagleKingdom
  • Political Ambassador
Badges: 13
Rep:
?
#12
Report 4 weeks ago
#12
Nay. I do not see there to be an issue with how the current system is in place.
0
SankaraInBloom
Badges: 8
Rep:
?
#13
Report 4 weeks ago
#13
I'm a big supporter of Lords reform, but this should only happen within the current chamber. If you want to improve local representation, introduce federalised assemblies. Don't do it by muddling bicameralism.
0
Saracen's Fez
Badges: 20
Rep:
?
#14
Report Thread starter 4 weeks ago
#14
Division! Clear the lobbies!
0
X
new posts
Latest
My Feed

See more of what you like on
The Student Room

You can personalise what you see on TSR. Tell us a little about yourself to get started.

Personalise

How did your AQA A-level Business Paper 1 go?

Loved the paper - Feeling positive (141)
21.11%
The paper was reasonable (327)
48.95%
Not feeling great about that exam... (125)
18.71%
It was TERRIBLE (75)
11.23%

Watched Threads

View All
Latest
My Feed